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Poster: jerlouvis Date: Jun 1, 2011 4:26pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 10/31/71 Stops Freight Trains

I have always found the appeal of this Dark Star to be somewhat confusing,it is clearly a transitory version,that tends to jump around in search of some direction and never really gels.The pre-verse jam contains some nice Jer and Phil interplay,and Weir while low in the mix adds some nice fills.After the verse Jer and Phil trade licks into a riffy jam sort of on the main theme/Other One-ish, then Jer noodles about until they settle into a lackluster Tighten Up jam that dissolves into a hackneyed end at about 19:30 where Jer proceeds to noodle until the 21 minute mark,where he reels off some very nice stinging leads and the music takes off into a strong space with Billy adding some nice touches before the Sugar Mag.
The fact that this version is held in such high regard when it is not really the psychedelic force it was,nor the jazz/space odyssey it would become is where my confusion lies,I hear no music on this version that even comes close to the 69'-70' or 72'-74' versions that define the song.
The 10/21 and 10/24 versions are much more focused and have a more band oriented feel with Keith playing a major role in both,all the more impressive as they were his 1st and 2nd efforts on the song,each version has a good UJB jam and some hot spacey passages.

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Poster: yesss! Date: Jun 1, 2011 10:55pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 10/31/71 Stops Freight Trains

yeah, i have to agree with you. i have never really found this show to be as special as a lot of people feel that it is and, having seen it mentioned here numerous times, i have given it lots of chances to prove me wrong. it just doesn't speak to me, i guess. i do love the fall '71 tour (especially the more rockin' numbers like cumberland and NFA) but this isn't one of the stronger shows imo, and there are dark stars from the tour that i personally prefer. but that is what makes music such a personal thing for folks- we all hear it differently based on who we are and when/how we listen. whatever floats yer boat.

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Poster: light into ashes Date: Jun 1, 2011 6:56pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: 10/31/71 Stops Freight Trains

Well, you're not all alone; the Taping Compendium wasn't thrilled either:
"Dark Star is played intricately and looks good on the surface, but it's too careful and pensive, void of any feeling. All the players have moments where they turn it up a notch, but never as a unified thrust. An interesting jam emerges halfway through...this leads into a spacey melt for a few minutes that starts to show signs of life - until Weir kills it dead by going into a decent Sugar Mag."